Mike Hedges AM appointed Small blue butterfly champion

  • This dainty butterfly is easily overlooked, partly because of its small size and
    dusky colour and it is restricted to patches of grassland with Kidney Vetch,
    its caterpillar foodplant.
    The adult can be seen from mid-May to late June in small coloni es,
    the adults rarely flying more than 40m. However, in south Wales they
    have colonised coalspoil sites in the Valleys many kilometres from their
    stronghold on the sand dunes, coastal cliffs and docklands. As a result it has
    increased its range in Wales compared to a sharp decline in Eng land.
    Kidney Vetch is a short-lived plant that requires regular disturbance to
    grow. The butterfly also needs tall grasses and shelter to roost and provide
    perches for the territorial males. The caterpillars only eat the flowers and
    seeds of Kidney Vetch before spending the winter in crevices in the ground.
    In Swansea East the Small Blue is found on sand dunes in the ma rina area.
    Lack of disturbance in vicinity of current breeding sites reducing quantity of
    Kidney Vetch available.
    Actions required
    1. Regular disturbance of grasslands on sand dunes and coastal cliffs.
    2. Small-scale habitat creation in vicinity of new developments throughout
    its range.
    More information
    Species Champion
    Lead member
    Mike Hedges AM
    Swansea East
    Welsh Labour
    Small Blue
    Wales Species Champions
    Contains OS data © copyright [and database] (2017)
    © George Tordoff

    January 5th, 2018 | Mike Hedges AM | No Comments |

Comments are closed.